“Ocean’s Eleven” to be a musical in Japan

The all-female Takarazuka Revue held a press conference on Monday to announce the Star Troupe’s next big production: the world’s first musical based on the hit 2001 movie “Ocean’s Eleven.” Koike Shuichiro is directing and writing the musical, which features a top-notch cast led by Yuzuki Reon as the eponymous Danny Ocean.

“Ocean’s 11″ was originally a 1960 movie starring Frank Sinatra and other Rat Packers, in which Sinatra (as Danny Ocean) recruits a team of 11 men, including himself, in order to pull off an elaborate heist of multiple Las Vegas casinos. The 2001 remake starred George Clooney as Danny Ocean, with a supporting cast that included Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, and Julia Roberts. That film spawned two sequels, “Ocean’s Twelve” in 2004 and “Ocean’s Thirteen” in 2007.

The Takarazuka musical will use the same characters from Clooney’s “Ocean’s Eleven.” Besides Yuzuki Reon as Danny Ocean, the cast features Kurenai Yuzuru as Terry Benedict (originally played by Andy Garcia), Suzumi Shio as Rusty Ryan (Brad Pitt), Yumeno Seika as Frank Catton (Bernie Mac), Makaze Suzuho as Linus Caldwell (Matt Damon), and Yumesaki Nene as Tess (Julia Roberts).

At the press conference, the Takarazuka Revue chairman Kobayashi Koichi revealed that the movie studio Warner Bros. proposed the “Ocean’s Eleven” musical, influenced by the Takarazuka Revue’s previous adaptation of the classic film “Casablanca.”

Performances of “Ocean’s Eleven” will begin at the Takarazuka Grand Theater in Hyogo from November 11 to December 13. That will be followed by a run at the Tokyo Takarazuka Theater from January 2 to February 5, 2012.

Takarazuka to adapt “Mei-chan no Shitsuji” into a musical

Riko Miyagi’s popular manga series "Mei-chan no Shitsuji" is going to be adapted as a stage musical next year, performed by the all-female Takarazuka Revue. Yuzuru Kurenai, the current otokoyaku of the Star Troupe, will play the lead role.

Akiko Kodama will write the script and direct. The musical’s working title at the moment is "Mei-chan no Shitsuji -Watakushi no Inochi ni Kaete Omamori Itashimasu-." More details about the story and cast will be announced in future issues of Shueisha’s magazine Margaret, in which the manga is serialized.

The original manga tells the story of an ordinary girl who suddenly ends up at an extremely wealthy all-girls school where every student has a personal butler. It was turned into a live-action series on Fuji TV last year, starring Nana Eikura (22) and Hiro Mizushima (26).

The Takarazuka version will be performed from January 29 to February 8 in the city of Takarazuka, Hyogo, then from February 15 to February 21 in Shinjuku, Tokyo.